On the upside...
I can learn.
This may sound like some figure of speech in which I’m couching broader meaning, but I actually mean it in the simplest, most straightforward way possible:
I have the physical (?) ability to learn more things that I did not previously know.
In my current condition, this isn’t the flippant and self-evident statement it might otherwise seem.
I don’t remember anything from Russian classes last year; don’t remember being in them at all.
Whatever knowledge I gained while attending them is still sticking with me – at least mostly. I am able to carry on in my current classes without significant gaps between knowledge expected of me from last semester, and what I’m able to produce. I retain the ability to speak; certainly I can speak the language well beyond the ability that I know I exhibited 16 months ago at the time of my accident.
Which is perhaps not surprising in some ways. After all, how much do you remember from when you first learned to speak (your first language)? But yet, you can still speak it. And likewise with any of the other myriad things you learned at that age. Learning != memory.
It’s a simple concept, but an important one. It’s cause for hope and something that I can clutch onto when there isn’t much else.
Who knows what I will ever regain the ability to remember in one, five, ten years from now. But at least in some respects I won’t be forever stuck in October 2013.
My Russian classes serendipitously serve as a recurring reminder of this. And they are seriously seriously the single best thing in my life right now.
I am holding on to that So. Hard.